Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Driving directions with a small map via

Viewed on DX in Portrait mode
Viewed on DX in Landscape mode

In the blog article for Using Google Maps text page for From-To Driving Directions with Kindle, I requested any information available on street maps that might be loadable on the Kindles, and Bob Hart alerted me to  Click on that to see the simple front page interface.
To access the KindleMap Driving Directions page, follow essentially the same steps as given in the Driving Directions guide Monday but use the URL (don't type the "http://" part on the Kindle)"

The KindleMap site was optimized for iPhones and iPods and to work with PCs and Macs.  However, on the Kindle, the maps are a fixed size and cannot be enlarged.

  Notice that on the large Kindle DX, there is no difference in map size when you rotate it to Landscape mode, and the entire right side of the screen is not used.  It doesn't adjust to a larger screen size on a mobile unit.

  You definitely would need a magnifying glass to use the maps on either the Kindle 2 or the DX.  Also, colors are used for the map, and they are translated into gray shades which are VERY light gray and difficult to read.

 However, if you want to get your bearings and have a magnifying glass in the car (I always carry a credit-card sized one on me), it can help.  Magnified, the lettering on street labels is readable.

The main site also features a search for local businesses and organizations as well as a browsable database of "million of places" organized by:

* Major USA Cities
* Country Capitals
* Major International Cities
* USA Places
* World Places
* Panoramio Photos from Places in the USA

I took a look at what was there for San Francisco and went to the Photos area, chosing randomly "Delores Park."  At the right is the resulting photo that includes a map of that neighborhood.

Definitely worth a look, but don't forget your magnifying glass.

The Directions look-up will take a bit longer because the map comes up before the driving directions and images always take longer to load than pure text.  I've bookmarked this for times when I do need to view a map of the area I'm in but will use the Google Text-Directions page for quicker-loading directions for driving, walking, bicycling or transit information (KindleMap is based on Google maps and has those options also).

Thanks again to Bob Hart for sending this.

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